Aquarium Livestock Pet Care Guides




Tank Temperature




Specific Gravity



Omnivorous; Feed a variety of flakes, pellets, fresh and frozen foods including meaty items and vegetation.


May become territorial, provide rockwork and rubble for hiding places. Do not keep multiples of the same or very similar species. Some species may eat bristleworms.


Community and Coral Safe; Invert Safe, with caution; Reef Safe.

Species Overview

Dottybacks are a popular and hardy aquarium fish that range greatly in size, temperament and coloration. Most come from the genus Pseudochromis but several other smaller genuses can also be found, including the new genus Pictichromis which contains the very common and popular Strawberry Dottyback (P. porphyrea), Diadema Dottyback (P. diadema) and the Bicolor Dottyback (P. paccagnallae).

They will normally accept frozen foods like brine shrimp and krill soon after acclimating to the home aquarium. Flake food or pellet food be added to the diet once the fish has become established in the aquarium to enhance the vitamins and minerals that they are receiving and keep them healthy.

Dottybacks are territorial fish, and should only be kept one to a tank. They will get along with all other types of fish as long as their home is not disturbed by other fish. They also need plenty of hiding places to feel comfortable. They are ideal for reef aquariums, although they may try to eat small ornamental shrimp like Sexy Shrimp (Thor sp.) and Anemone Shrimp (Periclimenes sp.). Some dottybacks are wellknown and sought after for their habit of eating nuisance Bristleworms, most notably are several from the Pseudochromis genus.

We always suggest that you do further research before adding a new pet to your tank. What we have provided for you are guidelines and suggestions. If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact our fish room at 717-299-5691 ext. 1213 or

Recommended Items

Frozen Aquarium Food
Salt Mix
Saltwater Community Food
Coral Ornaments
Feeding Tongs
Live Rock